I sent the following email to the “associate dean for admissions and financial aid,” Reyes Aguilar, and Dean Hiram Chodosh of the University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law. The email was sent on Wednesday, November 18, 2009 at 12:46 pm. No changes have been made to this letter (other than redacting my name for purposes of this blog and including “a” in front of “100% response rate”). If anyone wants to see the original email sent out to these two men, you can email me and I will forward you a copy.
Wednesday, November 18, 2009 12:46 PM
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Dean Hiram Chodosh
Dean Reyes Aguilar
S.J. Quinney College of Law
Dear Reyes and Hiram,
Gentlemen, on your school’s materials, it states that 98% of graduates from the Class of 2008 were employed within 9 months of graduation. And, according to the representatives from your school, this is based off of [a] 100% response rate to the graduate survey.
The same material also claims that the median starting salary is $89,021 for the Class of 2008. Is this counting private and public employers? Is this also counting those graduates who are working in non-law positions? Does this median figure include those working as retail and insurance salespeople, school teachers, clerks, and research assistants?
Lastly, the school lists a starting salary range of $42,000-$215,000. So, does this mean that not one single graduate from 2008 found a job making less than $42,000? I find this incredibly hard to believe – isn’t there a large oversupply of lawyers and JDs in the U.S.? Since your school publishes and presents these figures to attract more applicants, would you be willing to submit these figures to an outside, independent audit?
(I have attached a copy of the S.J. Quinney College of Law “Facts at a Glance” handout that was supplied at the recent law school fair.)
Evidently, these men are NOT WILLING to submit their purported employment and starting salary statistics to an independent audit. They couldn't even send a reply to my letter.
I suggest you write a similar letter to your local law school representatives, or to the law school of your choice. (Make sure you do not attack them personally or slander them in any way - you simply want information from them.) ASK THEM TO PRODUCE PROOF of their placement success. Then send the your letter to law blogs or to local or national newspapers. The schools can easily redact any identifying info, such as name of firm, graduate, etc. Isn’t this what lawyers and law students are trained to do, i.e. ask questions, uncover information, and ask for proof?!?!?
Hold their feet to the fire. Offer to debate them in a public forum. Contact the newspapers or local radio station. I am sure there will be some interest. This is more likely to get results (or news coverage) than asking your respective State AG Office or DoJ to investigate the law school cartel.